Terms of Service
“I don’t know dear, it just started acting funny today,” Nannah smiles at me. “I only use it to email Jeffy and Arthur.”
“You sure you didn’t do anything else to it?” I ask politely, but I know Nannah picks up on my tone.
“Well I like my googling.”
I hate helping old people with their computers.
“Do you think I clicked on something I shouldn’t have dear?”
“Well, let me take a look here.” I owe Nannah, so I kind of push my impatience off to the side. I don’t know why it’s so difficult for older people to pick up on these things. I don’t think older people are too stupid or set in their ways. It’s just, well, like their intuitive logic turns off when they turn the computer on.
“Would you like an iced tea, Glenn?” I hear Nannah from the kitchen.
“That’d be great, I was beginning to think no one in Australia knew how to make it.”
“Well dear, shouldn’t be too hard, just brew tea and add ice.”
“Sure.” Gods, would you look at this. How do people who do so little on the computer get so many viruses and spyware?
She hands me a large glass of iced tea. It’s kind of crisp, with just enough lemon. Not too sweet either.
“Nannah, this Tea is great.”
“Thank you, How is your cat, Glenn?”
“Uh, fine Nannah, thank you. I think she’s warming up to the new cat pretty well. It’s funny though how cats won’t cross lines of talcum powder. I guess it smells bad to them?”
“It smells bad to some cats, I’m sure.” She sits down beside me, “Honestly, I don’t know why people bother with them.”
“Shanna likes cats. Plus, they bury their own shit and bathe themselves. What more can you want from a pet?”
“I suppose that depends,” She takes a sip, no a swig of tea. “Did you find out what the problem was?”
“Oh right,” I almost forgot about the computer. I like talking with Nannah. I feel like a little kid when I say Nannah, but I can’t call her Mrs. Laveaux or whatever, sounds weird. “Well, Nannah, the scan is only half way through, but it’s coming up with two viruses and about three spywares so far.”
“Those are awful, I don’t know how I would have picked those up.”
“It happens. You just need to run your scans more often, it’ll get rid of them.”
“I can’t seem to get the scans to work properly for me…”
“It’s pretty simple. I can show you.”
“I just like to email Jeffy and Arthur. And google things.”
“Right.” I hate helping old people with their computers.
“That’s how you found the other cat, isn’t it?”
“Right, the ‘adopt me’ page. Shanna saw it and had to have it.”
Nannah smiles. She does it when I think I’ve said enough, but she thinks I haven’t.
“It should be good, y'know, for little Missy to have a friend to play with now that Shanna has gone back to work. Missy was there all day by herself, before we got the tom.”
“Spayed and neutered, I hope.”
“Had to, I don’t want kittens. Too much trouble. You get more than two cats, and you start going crazy. I think it’s a rule.”
“Cats are so dismissive of their caretakers. That can drive someone crazy. I much prefer dogs. They are loyal and rewarding to have around the house.”
“I guess, isn’t that a little, I dunno, self serving. An ego-trip like. You’ll only take care of something if it’s going to show blank eyed loyalty?”
“That depends on your point of view, Glenn dear.” She sets down the iced tea glass, leaving only half melted cubes of ice and a wedge of lemon dangling on the edge. “Your scan is done dear.”
“Oh right, we’ll just clean all these up.”
“How is Shanna’s job?”
“She likes it ok, it’s not bad. It pays well.”
“Hmm. Her co-workers are nice.”
“Yeah, I guess. It’s kind of… it helps her not to think about things. It’s good for her to have something to do. Y’know?”
“Yes, dear.” She cleans her glasses now, wiping them with a cloth.
“The program is running kind of slow. Have you thought of updating your RAM?”
She looks up at me with a wicked grin and one eye quite narrow. “Why no, I haven’t Glenn. Would that make it go quicker?”
“Yeah, I mean, it’s not hard to setup you know. Cheap too.”
“Well, I suppose Arthur and Jeffy could wait a few days for an email while my computer gets setup.”
“Perhaps a new video card too, to run some encyclopedia discs Jeffy gave me.”
“Um, ok that shouldn’t be a problem.”
“Will you need to take the monitor and keyboard too?”
“No, no, I just need the tower.” I power the computer down. I don’t know how I get myself into these things.
“You’re such a helpful young man, Glenn.”
“It’s ok, Nannnah,” I unplug everything and lift the tower up. It’s heavier than I expected, older. “Umph! It’s ok, y’know, I owe you one.”
“I can see that Shanna made a good choice in marrying such a nice American.”
“Right, well, I just wish we had moved back here sooner. I think it would’ve been good for her to have been around family during her pregnancy.”
“Maybe, love, but things happen for a reason.” She opens her front door as I heft the damn box of metal in my arms.
“I know, I guess. I just… I wish she wouldn’t blame herself so much for losing the baby. She did everything right during the pregnancy, y’know?”
Nannah smiles. “I know dear. Why don’t you have her come by sometime, I’m always willing to talk.”
“Bye, dear.” She shuts the door behind me. It takes more effort than I thought to get the computer into the back seat.
The door opens and Nannah comes back out with some sort of plastic covered dish in her hands. “It’s for Shanna dear. Have her take it to work with her.”
“Alright Nannah, thanks.”
I set it in the back seat, beside the computer tower. The thing is probably too old to find a compatible video card. Or RAM. I’ve never installed RAM. Should’a never mentioned it to her. Probably be easier to just get her a new computer.
I hate helping old people with their computers.
I wave goodbye to Nannah as I back out of the drive way.